Making Soap From Scratch on the Homestead

Author Photo
By Capper's Staff | Dec 30, 2011

We four sisters helped make everything we ate or used on the farm. Our hardest job was making soap from scratch.

Dad would build a big hopper which we filled with ashes from our wood fires. To wet down the ashes, we had to carry water half a .mile. The water ran thru the hopper, and what dripped into a pan was lye.

We put the lye in a big pot over a fire, with cracklings or any kind of grease, and boiled it until it thickened.

Brother, a little of that soap would go a long way! We were always treating our hands because it ate the skin off. 

Myra Poston
Dill City, Oklahoma

Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then Capper’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from Capper’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.

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